Private landlord responsibilities

Respect your tenant's right to privacy

You may need to access the property to inspect it and to carry out repairs but you must let tenants live in their home without unnecessary interference. You must give notice if you want to enter a property you are letting.

Evictions

You have to give written notice and get a court order if you want to evict your tenants.

Repairs

Landlords are responsible for most repairs to the exterior and structure of a property. You are responsible for problems with the -

  • roof
  • chimneys
  • lintels
  • walls
  • windows
  • doors
  • guttering
  • drains

You are also responsible for keeping the equipment in safe working order for supplying -

  • water
  • gas
  • electricity
  • heating systems

All maintenance work to gas appliances, flues and pipes must be carried out by a Gas Safe registered engineer.

Find out more about gas safety

Safety standards

You must make sure that -

  • an annual gas safety check is carried out and obtain a gas safety certificate for every gas appliance in your property. These must be issued by a Gas Safe registered engineer and renewed each year
  • any sofas or mattresses meet the fire safety standards
  • any electrical equipment provided is safe
  • the electrical installation is safe
  • the premises you let are safe for the occupation of your tenants and any visitors

Visit the Electrical Safety First website to find out more about safe electrical installation

Houses of multiple occupancy (HMO)

Landlords of certain buildings occupied by more than one household (for example, houses split into bedsits, shared houses, flats, hostels) have additional legal obligations to comply with housing management regulations which require the maintenance of, amongst other things - 

  • fire precautions
  • means of escape from fire
  • shared kitchens and bathrooms
  • yards, forecourts and shared gardens
  • outbuildings, boundary walls and fences

Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

Rented properties must have smoke detection alarms and in some instances carbon monoxide detectors.

Find out more information about smoke and carbon monoxide alarm regulations

Rent 

You must inform your tenants when the rent is to be paid and how you want it paid. You can't refuse to accept rent from your tenants. Rent can be increased but only at certain times of the tenancy and only in certain circumstances. This depends on the type of tenancy and what the tenancy agreement says about rent increases. 

If rent is paid weekly, you have to give your tenant a rent book. 

Information and communication 

All landlords have to give their tenants their name and a UK contact address. You must respond to your tenant's written requests within 21 days of receiving their letter. 

Housing Health and Safety Rating System 

The Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) is a risk assessment tool used to assess potential risks to the health and safety of occupants in residential properties.

Legionella risk assessment

Landlords must understand the health risks associated with legionella.

You are responsible for health and safety and need to take the correct precautions to reduce the risks of exposure to legionella.

Access the Health and Safety Executive website for more information on risk assessments